The CIWCL looks at Syria

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(short version)

Since mid-2012, the CIWCL has turned its attention, without name change, to events in Syria. See below for a longer initial explanation and starting thoughts. In short, we (Adam and Petri) have been working mostly at the research wiki A Closer Look On Syria (ACLOS), affiliated with but not part of CIWCL. Please see the often amazing findings that come together there, and feel free to join the still too-small community.
CIWCL's first major report on Syria Released

Official Truth, Real Truth, and Impunity for the Syrian Houla Massacre of May, 2012

Seven Essays By: Marinella Correggia, Alfredo Embid, Ronda Hauben, Adam Larson. 

PDF, 79 pages, published May 15, 2013

Jun.11,2013: The CIWCL revives the issue of the Dec. 2012 Aqrab Massacre (or whatever it really was). Six months ago, as many as 235 civilians, including children and women, disappeared into a rebel black hole in the town of Aqrab, next to al-Houla. Interestingly, they were Alawi (Alawites, president Assad's demonized co-religionists). We're asking some questions now, largely of the prominent Human Rights guardians who've been silent on the issue so far. We hope to have some new information on this page in time. 
Original Articles Hosted Here
(unless otherwise specified, by Adam Larson)

(Sept. 25) Actually an open letter to the UNHRC/OHCHR, it's posted here and serves as a detailed article on the Houla-Daraya axis of rebel deception, mostly from the alleged witnesses angle.

Original Articles Elsewhere

(unless otherwise specified, written by Adam Larson, based on communal ACLOS research)

At Global Research:

One Year After the Houla Massacre: New Report on Official Truth vs. Real Truth

May 18, 2013

Was the Syria Chemical Weapons Probe "Torpedoed" by the West?

May 2, 2013

At Dissident Voice:

The Houla Massacre and the Battle of Taldou: The Digital Witnesses Have Their Say 

February 4/5, 2013

part 1part 2

Originally at (which was closed down over death threats against its administrator and his family):

The Troubling Story Behind one of those Dead Syrian Child Videos - July 18, 2012

Active Link, Syrian Free Press

ACLOS research page

Houla Massacre Star Witness Reconsidered - July 3, 2012

Active Link, Arabi Souri 

ACLOS research page:

The CIWCL Looks at Syria

(long version)

People who've examined the Libya war like the CIWCL's members have cannot help but take an interest in the ongoing conflict in Syria, and the possibility of systemic deception there too. There's much that is different between the two countries; the population is more than triple, and the geo-strategic stakes are higher. There's still no NATO bombing pulverizing the nation's defenses, but over eighteen months of building up the rebel forces, havoc has intensified and spread. the level of in-your-face brutality - mass executions, abductions, torture, rape, killing of children by the Islamo-nihilists among the opposition - and their activist friends' chronic lies about it, seem to be more extreme and marked here than even in Libya, by a wide margin.  

Much is the same, however, including some of the fighters. Reported thousands of Libyans have been sent to bolster the Free Syrian Army" and bring their tricks to the field. Perhaps the best previous encapsulation of the emerging parallels is "Lessons for the Syria situation" at the Libyan Civil War blog/site. It's a little messy, but gets better near the bottom. 

Finally in September the CIWCL's co-founders decided to make Syria an official area of focus without starting a new group. Therefore, this page will be expanded to share and link to our various works on Syria. 

Below is the call to action one more brilliant person ("CE") took up, and after it the link to the research wiki she started. With help from cofounders Adam and Petri, it's grown not much in breadth but in depth on the several points chosen for analysis.

Towards a Citizen’s Investigation into War Crimes in Syria

This original pitch for public investigation, penned on June 19, has now been moved to its own page to make space here.

The Investigation Has Begun 
July 4, 2012
updates Sept. 9, Nov. 3

There's no agreed organization, but a site. The appeal above was answered almost instantly by "CE," who created the research wiki A Closer Look on Syria. I joined, as did CIWCL cofounder Petri, we've all done some work, and we're still accepting members willing to dig in a bit and help. 

Note: On October 27, the original A Closer Look site died and disappeared from the Internet, along with all of wikinet. Five days later, on 1 November, it was re-established by "CE" at Shoutwiki. The following updated links are some of the main pages up at A Closer Look on Syria. Sine the start, it has grown some in breadth, and in depth, at spots, it's now profound. 

Being the largest alleged government mass-killing to date, the recent Daraya massacre has recieved some of the deeper scrutiny that was originally slated for the one in Al-Houla.  Below are some observations from the research so far: 

  • Not mentioned in initial "activists say" reports, there were some number of government loyalists held hostage by rebels in Daraya. By some evidence, it was when negotiations on a prisoner transfer for opposition fighters fell through that the national army attacked the city. This aspect was first dramatically broken in a report from Robert Fisk on Aug. 29, and elicited much buzz and some rebuttals. Three hostages (all officers, all evil) are now admitted (pleaded to) by FSA spokespeople. Officers, off-duty conscripts, military families, and a mailman were all mentioned among those taken - more than three categories, let alone three people. But we don't know what the FSA's hand was entering into trade talks for their captured comrades. Was it closer to 3 or to 300?
  • Local witnesses, freed by the army from rebel-run basement shelters in Daraya, spoke to Addounia TV on Aug. 26. They claim they were forced in there by rebel fighters, mostly the day before (Aug. 25) to protect them from the government coming, with plans (that rebels knew about) to kill them. Some of the others weren't so lucky, and not all the shelters were found. Or were they? People executed in basement/shelters, by the government, of course, appeared on rebel videos in the following days. Time-release false flag massacre to coincide with the "brutal occupation?"
  • One eyebrow-raising feature of the Daraya massacre is the relative lack of alleged eyewitnesses and miracle survivors. This will likely turn around soon, but the delay is still noteworthy. Taken by surprise? Most witnesses and activists are called "Abu something." Even to the massive alleged mosque massacre there's no clear witness. The regime killed 150 or so while they his inside the Abu Suleiman Al Darani Mosque, it was said by some. Other reports aren't so sure, but speculate that's what happened, after they found the bodies there. 
  • The mosque massacre clearly didn't happen. If the rebel story (see last point) is correct, then why does it seem otherwise to be rebel base of operations on the southern fringe, especially crucial after losing most other bases? Why are all the bodies on/wrapped in blankets, one even in a coffin, with no blood spray all over the floor? Why are they dodgy about the "basement" the bodies were found in, the "makeshift morgue" they were taken to after, and the mass grave site they were then buried at? Because it's all, visually verified, the same rebel-base-mosque? (There are some interesting facts buried now in that dirt lot... Damascus will want to strip mine it for data ASAP. But first, they'll have to attack a mosque, again. Watch for news on that...)